Advertisement

Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Man on a Ledge

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violence and brief language
Profanity:Brief strong language (f-word), crude sexual references
Nudity/Sex:Sexual references, some crude sexual humor
Alcohol/Drugs:Smoking
Violence/Scariness:Attempted suicide, characters in peril, some injuries
Diversity Issues:Diverse characters
Movie Release Date:January 27, 2012
DVD Release Date:May 29, 2012
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violence and brief language
Profanity: Brief strong language (f-word), crude sexual references
Nudity/Sex: Sexual references, some crude sexual humor
Alcohol/Drugs: Smoking
Violence/Scariness: Attempted suicide, characters in peril, some injuries
Diversity Issues: Diverse characters
Movie Release Date: January 27, 2012
DVD Release Date: May 29, 2012

It wants to be a twisty-turny thriller but it is as straightforward as its title.  A man we will later know as Nick (Sam Worthington) checks into a New York hotel, orders room service (we see he has a scraped knuckle), and then he opens the window and goes out onto the ledge.  Nick is indeed a man on a ledge for just about all of the rest of the movie.

Police negotiator Jack Dougherty (Edward Burns) comes in, ready to go by the book to talk Nick back inside, to make him feel that Nick can trust him.  But Nick insists he will only talk to Lydia Mercer (Elizabeth Banks) and Jack does not have much to bargain with.  So, against his better judgment, he tracks down Lydia, who is in disgrace with the department following a negotiation gone wrong that left her torturing herself.  She has had no previous contact with Nick and has no idea why he called her, but she knows that establishing a connection with a suicide risk is critical so she is hopeful that whatever reason was behind his request will give her a place to start.

Advertisement

The story splits in three.  We get a flashback that tells us a little bit about why Nick is so desperate.  And we see that on the same block he overlooks on the ledge, a young couple (“Billy Elliot’s” Jamie Bell and the luscious Genesis Rodriguez) seem to be undertaking an exceptionally well-planned hi-tech heist.   And we also meet Ed Harris as an arrogant Mr. 1%-er-style bully, chewing on an enormous cigar and barking orders: “Get me the mayor!”

Advertisement

We’re pretty sure how it’s all going to come together and none of it holds up to any sort of logic or reality check, but there are some entertaining moments along the way.  I admit to being a sucker for heist films.  I love to see the way they plan to overcome all of the security measures and I love to see what happens when things go wrong.  Bell and Rodriguez have a fine rapport and their progress through the many layers of protections provides some momentum to balance the static setting on the ledge.  Eventually, Lydia discovers Nick’s true identity (preposterous plot element #1 is that given his situation it is impossible to believe that no one recognizes him), a police helicopter and (of course) an obnoxious TV news reporter (Kyra Sedgewick, clearly enjoying herself very much) almost throw him off (literally, in the case of the chopper), but Nick stays focused.  Worthington’s performance is bland, Harris barely qualifies as one-dimensional, and the plot falls apart in the last half hour, but Banks and Rodriguez lend warmth and humor, doing a welcome bit of heisting of their own in stealing the movie from their male co-stars.

Advertisement

Parents should know that this film includes some violence with fistfights, shooting, and peril, characters injured and killed, brief strong language (f-word), sexual references – some crude, and a cigar.

Family discussion: Why did Nick insist on having Lydia as his contact?   Which of the unexpected developments was the toughest for Nick to handle?

If you like this, try: “The Negotiator” with Kevin Spacey and Samuel L. Jackson

Previous Posts

Trailer: Disney's Descendants With the Next Generation of Villains
Coming to the Disney Channel this summer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4UUQqefajc& ...

posted 3:47:40pm Apr. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Men in Suits: Costume Designers Talk about "Scandal," "Mad Men," and More Suit-Wearing Characters on TV
The women's clothes get all the attention, but for a costume designer -- and for the actor -- a suit is just as important. Indiewire ...

posted 3:27:23pm Apr. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Matt Mamula of Celebrity Impersonator Documentary "Just About Famous"
Matt Mamula co-directed "Just About Famous," the very entertaining new documentary about celebrity impersonators. He generously took time to talk to me about the unexpected opportunities that open up when someone looks like someone who becomes ...

posted 3:59:51pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Barak Goodman of "Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies"
Director Barak Goodman talked to me about his superb series for PBS, Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies, now available on DVD. The series is produced ...

posted 3:55:04pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Creativity Conference 2015: Nancy Pelosi, Snoopy, and Drones with GoPros
I had so much fun at last year's Creativity Conference that I could not imagine how they could top it this year, but they succeeded. This is ...

posted 3:07:48pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.